Tutorial video legality

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Tutorial video legality

Postby Folderp » August 14th, 2018, 8:43 am

Sorry to bring down the boat - again - with legality issues - again - but does anyone know if MarianoZavala and FearlessFlourish tutorials are legal or not? Like I said before, I don't want to be using illegal instructions, and this issue's not nearly as obvious as the last one. If nobody knows or replies, I'll just ask a designer or two. I promise I'll start making interesting conversation soon. And join the monthly challenges. I've already designed something, I just need to post it. Just so you know I'm not only here to annoy people with legality stuff. And ask questions that have been asked a million times before.
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Re: Tutorial video legality

Postby Goldtiger-997 » August 14th, 2018, 9:50 am

MarianoZavala's tutorials are not illegal per se, but those tutorials certainly aren't respecting the rights of the designers. He has repeatedly uploaded videos of authors designs without asking for permission, and deleted any messages that ask him to stop doing this. (This hasn't happened to me personally, but I have read it in many different places.) You can read more about the topic in more detail in this flickr post by Damian Malicki and this forum thread.

So the videos are not technically illegal, but they probably deserve to be. I do agree that this isn't obvious; I used to use his tutorials before I learnt of this.

(I'm not sure about FearlessFlourish's videos though.)
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Re: Tutorial video legality

Postby steingar » August 14th, 2018, 6:58 pm

As far as I know, someone making a video owns the copyright to said video. Don't see any issue myself.
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Re: Tutorial video legality

Postby Baltorigamist » August 14th, 2018, 8:17 pm

I wouldn't support Mariano if I were you. Whether it's illegal or not, he's making money from others' hard work. FearlessFlourish I don't know one way or the other, but I would suggest supporting Sara Adams, Jo Nakashima, or Tadashi Mori if you like using tutorials. (There's also another person who posts--or did at one time--tutorials for modular models under the name Barbebelaatje or something. I don't know if they were legal, however.)
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Re: Tutorial video legality

Postby steingar » August 14th, 2018, 8:47 pm

Once again, US copyright statues are on-line and free for your perusal. They do not mention Origami at all. Therefore, whatever you want to do with the designs of others is legal except copying the diagrams or crease patterns and selling or distributing them verbatim, which is indeed a violation of copyright.

Put another way, how many of you post photos on photo sharing sites like Flicker and instagram of models you folded but didn't design. Same issue.
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Re: Tutorial video legality

Postby Baltorigamist » August 14th, 2018, 10:01 pm

Just to play devil's advocate, is there a difference between copying the diagrams and making a tutorial? I never said that Mariano's videos were illegal--I just implied that they're unethical. I understand that American copyright law doesn't specifically mention origami, but your post leads me to believe that the tutorials may be illegal.

Any model's folding sequence (i.e. diagrams) falls under intellectual property if I'm not mistaken. (Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong.) And, to me, a video tutorial is much the same as the diagrams, albeit in a different format. Plenty of people post pictures of individual steps--is that illegal? (I'm not saying it is outright.)

Also, there's the issue of money. From what I understand, it is (or should be) illegal to make a profit from someone else's intellectual property--the same reason it's frowned upon/illegal to sell someone else's design. While posting a picture of a model (regardless of whose design) is extremely unlikely to grant the folder any monetary gain, Mariano is more than likely making money from his videos (as, if I understand, Youtube users earn money once their videos reach a certain view count).

Again, Folderp and Goldtiger, I would not (will not) support Mariano.
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Re: Tutorial video legality

Postby Folderp » August 15th, 2018, 1:40 am

Thanks, that helps, I guess I'll stick to books, legal cps and ethical tutorials.
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Re: Tutorial video legality

Postby Brimstone » August 15th, 2018, 2:52 am

steingar wrote:...Put another way, how many of you post photos on photo sharing sites like Flicker and instagram of models you folded but didn't design. Same issue.


It's not the same issue at all. If I upload a picture to show people that I folded a model someone else designed, it does not affect the money the creator could make if she were to sell a diagram for it, on the contrary it could promote the model and push some people to buy the diagram. Totally different than allowing people for free to access copyrighted material and on top of that profiting from it.
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Re: Tutorial video legality

Postby Froy » August 15th, 2018, 5:37 pm

steingar wrote:Once again, US copyright statues are on-line and free for your perusal. They do not mention Origami at all. Therefore, whatever you want to do with the designs of others is legal except copying the diagrams or crease patterns and selling or distributing them verbatim, which is indeed a violation of copyright.

Put another way, how many of you post photos on photo sharing sites like Flicker and instagram of models you folded but didn't design. Same issue.


A video tutorial is a spin-off of the diagrams, showing how to make a figure is like posting diagrams illegally. When you buy a book you get the rights to fold a figure, but still you can't make money out of it.
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Re: Tutorial video legality

Postby steingar » August 15th, 2018, 9:08 pm

Brimstone wrote:
steingar wrote:...Put another way, how many of you post photos on photo sharing sites like Flicker and instagram of models you folded but didn't design. Same issue.


It's not the same issue at all. If I upload a picture to show people that I folded a model someone else designed, it does not affect the money the creator could make if she were to sell a diagram for it, on the contrary it could promote the model and push some people to buy the diagram. Totally different than allowing people for free to access copyrighted material and on top of that profiting from it.


What if you sell your photos? Are you saying you don't own the copyright to artistic works that you create because they're based on the works of another? I think you will run into some very murky waters there.

Moreover, lets say that I re-diagram a model of another's. I do my own artwork, and perhaps the steps are the same but the overall look is significantly different. Am I really violating the author's copyright? To be honest, whether or not I did would be in the view of a judge.

A video is not a set of diagrams. It is not in any way a duplicate of protected works, but instead a completely different medium altogether. How you violate copyright with works in another medium is a stretch for me, though I am certainly not an expert in these matters. Then again, neither is anyone else. Origami is not mentioned in US copyright law, therefore the issue is up to whatever judge hears the case. Since it hasn't happened there is no legal guidance.

Legal and ethical are often very different things. If you want to do the ethical thing don't watch the videos. Better yet, go purchase the original author's books or designs, thus supporting them. Then watch the videos to assist in your understanding.
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Re: Tutorial video legality

Postby Baltorigamist » August 16th, 2018, 2:04 am

Steingar ->
I have a serious question: say someone converts a piece of audio (a song, maybe) into its raw data form. Is it a copyright violation to distribute that raw data if it can be reconverted into audio?

I think everything depends on where the lines of intellectual property are drawn.
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Re: Tutorial video legality

Postby Dave Brill » August 16th, 2018, 7:02 am

steingar wrote:As far as I know, someone making a video owns the copyright to said video. Don't see any issue myself.


Michael: ignoring any legal or moral issues, posting origami tutorial videos without having first obtained the approval of the designer is just BLOODY BAD MANNERS. Irrespective of how well made the video is, the designer may not approve of the method used - remember there's a lot more to origami than the finished product. Designers take pride in the method flow and sequence to complete the whole folding experience: this is often ignored or changed by the video maker.

Posting unsanctioned videos does nothing at all to enhance the reputation of the video maker, and always infuriates the designers who weren't consulted.

How difficult is it to contact the designer to ask permission?

Mariano Zavala: if you're reading this, please take note. Please change your ways!
Forum members: please don't support unauthorised video makers.
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Re: Tutorial video legality

Postby Folderp » August 16th, 2018, 8:20 am

steingar wrote:Are you saying you don't own the copyright to artistic works that you create because they're based on the works of another?

For this I must redirect you to Robert Lang's page on copyright. If you don't want to read the whole thing, in it he states "a reproduction of a creative work is considered a derivative work no matter how it was derived and the original composer retains rights in the work," and "a modification of a creative work is considered a derivative work and the original composer retains rights in the work." In other words, no, you don't own copyright.
steingar wrote:Origami is not mentioned in US copyright law

No it isn't, but I believe art is, and origami is most certainly art.
There is quite an interesting legal case filed by Lang and other origamists around crease patterns. It's really quite interesting and does show that derivatives of origami works are considered subject to copyright. You can find it here. http://www.langorigami.com/article/sarah-morris-copyright-infringement
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Re: Tutorial video legality

Postby Folderp » August 17th, 2018, 2:05 pm

Okay on the issue of FearlessFlourish tutorials, I e-mailed Robert Lang and here's what he said: "I don’t recognize the name “Fearless Flourish”, but if he’s put the permission notice at the beginning of the video, then he probably did contact me and get permission." From this you can decide for yourself whether or not to support him or use hos tutorials. I think I will.
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Re: Tutorial video legality

Postby steingar » August 17th, 2018, 6:30 pm

Dave Brill wrote:How difficult is it to contact the designer to ask permission?


I honestly don't have a dog in this hunt, I'm far too unphotogenic to make videos. That said, getting permission can be very difficult indeed, especially if the designer resides in a foreign land. It can be even moreso if said folder is from Japan, given the level of language barrier.

I never address the issue of good or bad manners, I addressed legality.

Folderp wrote:
steingar wrote:Are you saying you don't own the copyright to artistic works that you create because they're based on the works of another?

For this I must redirect you to Robert Lang's page on copyright. If you don't want to read the whole thing, in it he states "a reproduction of a creative work is considered a derivative work no matter how it was derived and the original composer retains rights in the work," and "a modification of a creative work is considered a derivative work and the original composer retains rights in the work." In other words, no, you don't own copyright.


I will remind you that Robert, though easily one of the brightest people I have the pleasure of knowing, is not a legal professional of any stripe. I would further point out that the lawsuit in which he was a plaintiff never went to trial, hence it set no legal precedent.

steingar wrote:Origami is not mentioned in US copyright law

Folderp wrote:No it isn't, but I believe art is, and origami is most certainly art.


I would call it craft, and the majority of its practitioners artisans. I use that appellation for myself. I tend to reserve the term "artist" for folks like Robert, David and some of the others on this board.
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